The Brewers Association’s site for craft beer drinkers just released its annual list.
For the sixth consecutive year, CraftBeer.com—the Brewers Association’s website targeting craft beer drinkers instead of industry professionals—has released its list of Great American Beer Bars, which chooses a top craft beer bar in every state and D.C. based on nominations from CraftBeer.com readers.
Since the list is determined by votes from craft beer fans instead of being curated by experts, this annual exercise is always extremely interesting for a couple reasons. First, it’s extremely dynamic: This year, about half the bars readers selected are different from those chosen in 2017. Second, the list tends to avoid some of the typical slants you’ll see in a curated list: For instance, sorry, New York City; your state is represented by a tiny taproom out in the central New York state city of Rome.
“CraftBeer.com readers have an extensive level of insight on what makes a beer bar truly stand out,” Jess Baker, the site’s editor in chief, said in a statement. “The Great American Beers Bars, selected by nearly 8,000 individual nominations cast by CraftBeer.com readers, are each stewards of quality craft beer and beer service. These outstanding beer bars, taprooms and brewpubs introduce their customers to new and exciting beer experiences, and have been integral to the success of the independent craft brewing movement.”
Beyond simply naming the 51 bars, the list also includes a few pieces of relevant information including the year the bar was founded and the size of the selection of bottles/cans and beers on draft. The selection includes bars as new as Arden, North Carolina’s Craft Centric Taproom & Bottleshop, which opened last year, to old standbys like Portland, Maine’s legendary Great Lost Bear, which opened back in 1979. And as proof that size doesn’t matter, the bar with the smallest draft list—Portland, Oregon’s The BeerMongers—has just 11 taps.
You can find the entire list over at CraftBeer.com.